Heart attack risk increased by depression

by Medindia Content Team on  March 24, 2005 at 4:42 PM General Health News
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Heart attack risk increased by depression
A new study has found out that depression has to be blamed for increased risk of heart attack rather than anti-depressants used to treat the same. The study was conducted on 60,000 patients submitted by 644 general practices.

At first glance, results showed both the newer and older classes of antidepressants increased the risk of a first heart attack within the first month of being prescribed.The older class of tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) was shown to double the risk of heart attack within the first week of use in patients taking the medication for the first time. Patients on the newer class of antidepressants meds, which are known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), also had a doubled risk of having a heart attack.

It was found out that the heart attack risk was much lower in patients taking antidepressants for more than a month. In conclusion, it was documented that antidepressant prescriptions are associated with an increased risk of heart attack. However, the lack of specificity between types of anti-depressants and the lower risks found in the self-controlled analysis suggest that these associations are more likely due to factors relating to underlying depression and health services utilization than to specific adverse drug effects.

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